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Old 01-17-2012, 07:37 AM   #49
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 822
United Kingdom
Re: bokken suburi questions

All this business about self correction and effectively came about from me trying to justify why I think that borrowing from other martial arts is problematic.

If like me you think that Aikido is not self correcting, here is something to consider. On piece of paper mark a point and label it with your name. Connect it to a new point labeled with a name of your teacher. Connect this point to a new point labeled with the name of your teacher's teacher. Continue until you connect to a point labeled "Ueshiba Morihei", this is you lineage. If you have more then one path connecting you to the founder, perhaps you can choose one as the most significant.
Regardless, on every hop between teacher and student, due to imperfect transmission, information is lost and the further away you are from the source, the less the thing that you have resembles the original.

I don't make a value judgement here, not saying that this is good or bad. It just follows logically from the assumptions.

A few things can be said about this

1. Some people practice in a way as to minimise information loss, they mimic their teacher in minutest detail, suppress their own desire to introduce innovations, accommodate their likes and dislikes, etc...
This maybe true, but from my experience, the vast majority doesn't train this way.

2. Perhaps it isn't that bad that things change, wasn't the founder himself a "changer", isn't this what shuhari is all about?
Perhaps, but consider that the founder dedicated all his life to budo. He simply did nothing else, didn't have a proper job, just budo. As did Takeda before him. Innovation coming from people with this kind of credentials is valid. From people with lesser, credentials - you decide.

3. Maybe fidelity can be restored. Maybe one can look at his teachers teacher (or even higher up the path to the source) and obtain something her direct teacher missed.
This probably happens occasionally but I doubt that this is enough to reverse the global trend.

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